Saturday, 28 May 2016

Seamed skirt & my first use of Knipmode

When the most recent issue of Knipmode (06-2016) arrived through my door earlier this month, I was delighted with it. It's a really lovely issue with tons of patterns I like. I'm particularly enamoured with Knipmode's semi-regular sets of bodice/sleeve/skirt mix-and-match dress patterns, and there's another great one of those in this issue. However, what really leapt out at me was the one skirt pattern in the issue, pattern number 20:

Knipmode 06-2016-20 skirt, image and drawing from Knipmode
(Unfortunately, Knipmode don't make every pattern in the magazine available electronically, and this is one of the patterns that is missed off the electronic release this month, so I can't link you to it.)

Although I've been receiving (and thoroughly enjoying flipping through) Knipmode for close a year now, I haven't actually made anything up from any of the issues so far. (The one Knipmode pattern I have made up previously (a shirt with placket) was an older (2013) PDF pattern that I bought from their website.) You might have noticed, however, a slight uptick recently in my use of patterns from more recent issues of my magazine subscriptions. I'm trying very hard to be a little less slow and deliberate in my use of patterns! In keeping with this new policy, I bumped this skirt up to the top of the sewing queue and always hoped to make it this month.
It is virtually impossible to get a good image of a black skirt indoors, but here it is anyway - Knipmode 06-2016-20 in black stretch denim, with grey topstitching and a silver metal zip, as modelled by a hanger.
What really grabbed me about the pattern was the seaming and the centre front zip. I happened to have a rather nice zip that I salvaged from a hoodie thing that I made about 18 months ago but only got to wear a handful of times before the terrible fabric totally fell apart on me. However, I had to buy fabric because it required something bottom-weight with stretch, and the only piece I had was not big enough. Instead I picked up 1m of a 5% lycra black denim online (and then, due to operator error, bought a second 1m piece to finish it.)

The first challenge was to pick a size as the sizing chart is different from Burda/Ottobre. The main difference for patterns where you're looking at lower body only is that the Knipmode measurement chart puts you one size smaller than Burda/Ottobre. I usually choose by hip measurements only. My current hip measurement is 99cm, or a closest to a size 40 (98cm) in Burda/Ottobre and a size 38 (also 98cm) in Knipmode. Both of my most recent skirts were in an Ottobre size 40. In theory, I ought therefore to have gone for a 38 in this pattern. In the end, however, I decided to use a size 40 for this pattern as well, mainly because the skirt in the modelled image seemed to have very little ease. Also, I honestly could not really wrap my head around making anything in a size 38. I mean, I know it's an arbitrary number and meaningless, but it just seemed like any size that started with a 3 was likely to be too small for me. 

(Click to make the image larger) Top-stitching detail on the front, back, and the shape made at the side seam
Actually making the skirt was very straightforward. I can't read a word of Dutch beyond what I can intuit based on English + exceedingly rusty German, but handily every seam is labelled and the instructions are very much of the "Stitch seam A. Topstitch." variety which doesn't take a lot of mental effort once you've translated it once. Plus of course I can work out waistbands/zips, etc for myself at this point in my sewing career. The biggest problem I had in construction, as I reported in my last post, was my own idiocy. I was finishing a side seam on my overlocker when I caught the fabric in the blade and cut a massive hole in it (Instagram evidence). Other than that, though, I felt like it went together well. My seams/stitching don't match up 100% perfectly -- I am sure anyone who quilts would shudder away from my finished item as I know perfect point matching is their goal! -- but they are certainly close enough for me to be happy with it. I topstitched in grey but just used a slightly heavier cotton thread rather than proper topstitch thread as I did with my polka dot skirt. I made no changes other than to miss off
the belt-loops, but only because I forgot to make any!

I'm sorry, this is a terrible photo, but it was the best I could do. Photographing black garments is a trial.
As for fit, well, it's not perfect. It's a close-fitting design and I think possibly Knipmode make assumptions about hip & thigh size that don't hold for my thighs (which I know is certainly true of Burda -- I definitely have larger thighs than they draft for compared to my hip size). On the other hand, I might have been better with a 38 at the waist rather than the 40. It's not loose by any means, but it's not well fitting for a stretch fabric. That said, I am hesitant to draw too many conclusions about fit or future pattern size choices because I used a stretch denim with PLENTY of stretch, so it's hard to know what I'm getting away with fit-wise simply because the fabric is forgiving.

This turned out to be a really nice test of Knipmode for me. It's a pretty simple pattern, but with all those seaming details it was a good chance to see how well pattern pieces fit together, what the tracing experience was like and how well the pattern and the modelled image resembled one another. My conclusions were: this pattern is well-drafted in the sense that the pieces fit together beautifully. It had zero notches, though, but it also didn't really need them. I found tracing it overall pretty similar to Burda/Ottobre -- there are more pattern sheets and fewer patterns per sheet than Burda, and it's less eye-searingly Spirograph-like than Ottobre, but personally I found differentiating between adjacent size lines less obvious than in Burda. I think my skirt and the modelled image look pretty similar. However, I was quite surprised to discover the skirt is moderately pegged at the hem rather than straight, because it doesn't really look at all pegged in the technical drawing. That is something I'll keep an eye on as I make more from my magazines.

In conclusion: I am really delighted with how this turned out, especially since halfway through I was reduced to extreme frustration by my overlocker mistake. I'm definitely keen to make more from my back issues and future issues of the Knipmode magazines now I've gotten started!

Wednesday, 25 May 2016

Nobody does rectangles like Burda does rectangles

I'm having a frustrating week where nothing is quite turning out as I hoped it would. Nevertheless, I've ticked a couple more things on my summer sewing list, even if they're not quite sewn quite the way I would have liked.

First up, absolutely positively my last knit top of the summer, from Burda 06-2016, number 101. This pattern caused some amusement on the PR message board when the previews came out, where it was described as "a square with a rectangle on top". I kept my mouth shut while all around me agreed it was ridiculous because I had a weird yen to make it and was determined to do so as soon as my magazine arrived. Now that I look at the images, I'm wondering if it caught my attention because my fabric was the same colour as the sample in the magazine!
Burda 06-2016-101A, images from Burdastyle
The only significant change I made was the shorten the sleeves. I really didn't like the strange below-the-elbow length on the pattern as written, so I chopped off 12cm before I ever put the pattern on the fabric. I also added just a little bit of length to the lower part of the body, around 5cm in total. This was easy to do because #101C is a mini-dress version of the same top, so I just followed the shape of the pattern for an extra few cm when tracing. Otherwise, it's a size 44 straight off the pattern sheet.

Burda 06-2016-101, my version... yes, also in bright pink!
On Flossie, it really doesn't look all that interesting, but I actually really love the way this hangs on an actual person. I was too lazy (and not feeling well enough) today to take better shots on me, so I'm afraid I'll have to demonstrate with a shoddy iPhone photo from my Instagram. I was a bit concerned that the horizontal seam would run right across my bust apex (because I have a low bust and/or am longer through the upper torso than Burda's standard draft, I've never entirely worked out which), but it actually runs below the bust and I think looks OK.

Burda 06-2016-101 on me
In my very drapey viscose knit (unlike the scuba and weird furry stuff used by Burda in their sample images) I absolutely love the way the sleeves hang and drape. Also, you can see from the photo on me how very curvy the lower part of the bodice is, making it rather nicely shaped -- much more shaped than you'd think from the technical drawing. As usual, too, the pattern is really nicely put together -- as you expect from a Burda pattern, stack of basic geometric shapes or not!

The very curved side seams
Overall I am quite pleased with this top. I'd be even more pleased if it weren't for some fabric/sewing problems. It REFUSED to take a hem on my coverstitch. Like, nothing in the way of changing settings worked to make it stop pulling and gathering and tunnelling. In the end I gave up and left the edges of the hem and sleeves raw. It's really not the finish I like, but if the fabric doesn't want to play, what can you do? ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

In conclusion: Simple little tee in bright pink: DONE. I'd absolutely make this pattern again, and I actually think it would look great as a really simple evening top in a slinky knit.

Next up I decided to make some more skirts. I started with a Knipmode skirt from the most recent issue that I went nuts for as soon as I opened the magazine. The sewing was all going really well, and I was super in love with it... and then I had an actual conversation with myself where I went: I am feeling really tired and not very well. I should stop and carry on tomorrow! No, wait, I will just run my overlocker along these seams to finish them and THEN I will stop.

I mean, what could possibly go wrong with that decision? It's not like my overlocker has a giant blade on it ready to punish any inattention due to tiredness or anything. /o\

Three minutes later, of course, I'd cut a giant fuck-off hole in my skirt. I haven't made that mistake in ages and now I've done it on two skirts in a row. With the blue polka dot skirt the cut was pretty small and right down at the hem. I was annoyed but I knew straight away it was going to be possible to patch. With this one, it was an absolute disaster of a hole: massive, impossible to patch, and I didn't have enough fabric to recut the panel I'd wrecked. I was SO ANGRY. Like, absolutely furious with myself, flung the skirt across the room and went to go pout somewhere over my own idiocy. Eventually I got over myself and after thinking about it and pinning the skirt, hole and all, together to a point where I could try it on and see how it looked when worn, I decided to order another 1m of fabric so I could finish it. I'm just waiting for it to arrive in the post now.

Meanwhile, I decided to make my third skirt for the summer, in a rather wild red and white stretch cotton sateen. As the print is quite busy and I didn't have a lot of it -- a scant 1m piece with a corner cut out I bought as a remnant --  I decided to go for a very simple skirt pattern.

Ottobre 05-2013-11 "On Trend" Skirt (from Ottobre magazine)
This is from the Ottobre Woman 05-2013 issue and it is indeed a very simple skirt. I have been in search of my platonic ideal of a semi-casual straight skirt pattern with pockets and a minimum number of seams for a while now, but this is not it, either, unfortunately!

Ottobre 05-2013-10 in stretch cotton sateen on Flossie
This is a size 40 straight from the pattern sheet. I made only one change, which was to omit the lining. I didn't have even remotely enough fabric to match properly along the side or centre back seam -- I barely had enough fabric to cut the actual skirt! I settled for matching the horizontal motifs as well as I could at the side seams and not trying to match the actual shapes with any accuracy. However, to get the side seams to match even moderately well, I then struggled a bit at the centre back (as you can see) because the print was just slightly off grain. I never know which you should prioritize when it comes to pattern matching, the side or the back seam, when you can't get them both to work.
Side and back view of red and white skirt
I put a cotton reel in my pocket in the side so you can see where it is. I like these pockets, but I don't love them. I am never overly fond of pockets that open diagonally over the hip like this, I think it's ripe for them bulging open when you sit down. I also deeply disliked the (straight, folded) waistband and the way it was applied to the skirt. It doesn't fit me super well and it's a very skinny sort of waistband by the time you've sewn it on. It doesn't help I did a rotten job of the little foldover bit at the centre back of the waistband as well. It looks really dodgy. I mean, nobody will see it, so I'm not in despair over it or anything, but ugh, I need to do better on those sort of details. On the plus side, my invisible zip, while not TOTALLY invisible, is considerably less visible than the last couple I did, so that's a win.

Another dodgy iPhone shot for my modelled shot
Overall, again, I'm pretty happy with how this turned out. I might not make this skirt pattern up again but it's given me further ideas of what I do (and don't) want from my eventual TNT easy straight skirt with pockets and minimal seams that I can get out of 1m of a a 150cm wide fabric. That sounds really specific, I guess, but it's all because I like the idea of being able to add a colour/print "bottom" to my wardrobe really cheaply and easily. I think it would be a great way to add diversity to my wardrobe if I could just pick up a single metre of a wild print or a bright/different colour and make a pattern I like to wear without having to spend 3 hours trying to pattern match across multiple seams.

Next up: When the fabric arrives, I'm planning to crack on with my Knipmode skirt. In the meantime I am also making a no pattern gathered maxi, and then I will also be done with skirt sewing for the summer and can think about what to make next.

Thursday, 19 May 2016

Done at last: Wanderling sweater

I cast this sweater on on 31/08/2015 and today it is FINALLY (and wholly unseasonably) finished!

Wanderling sweater in Drops Alpaca (colourway: Dark Grey): front view
It did not really take me the better part of nine months to knit this. I knitted the body in 20 days, finishing it on 19 September 2015. After some initial false starts, I really enjoyed knitting the body of the jumper and thought I would finish quickly. But then I just... stalled. Every so often I'd pick it up and force myself to knit a little bit more of the very boring stocking stitch sleeves, but then I'd get fed up and stop again. I started knitting again with about a third of one sleeve done on 1 May 2016, and I finished knitting on the 17th. So, in fact, this jumper took me about 40 days, give or take a day or two, they were just rather spread out over nine months! It's meant I've finished the jumper just in time for me to put it away for at least 3-4 months until the weather cools down, but at least it's not lurking about unfinished in my knitting bag any more. \o/

Wanderling sweater in Drops Alpaca (colourway: Dark Grey): back view
The pattern is Wanderling by Isabell Kraemer (Ravelry link), and I found it to be an excellent pattern. I'd definitely knit more of this pattern writer's creations based on this experience. I am very far from an experienced knitter of jumpers, but my finished jumper looks surprisingly good to me. Although I really struggled with the neckline at the start and had to rip back to nothing four separate times, that was all due to my novice knitting rather than the pattern.

I was particularly attracted to the pattern by the panel of sort of faux cabling at the back that also runs in bands along the raglan sleeve and down the side of the jumper.

Close up of the back panel. My hairy yarn means the stitch definition isn't that great, but it still looks nice!

It was very easy to learn the stitches for the panel and I don't have too many mistakes in it!

You can maybe just about make out the lines of the same stitch pattern down the side of the jumper
I used Drops Alpaca, which is a relatively inexpensive 100% Alpaca 4-ply yarn, in the Dark Grey colourway. I like the finished garment a lot in this yarn and found it very easy to knit with, but the stitch definition is probably not the greatest if you're looking for those mock cables to show up really clearly. It remains to be seen whether it's a bit itchy to wear. It was very hairy and shed all over everything while I was making it, and presumably will continue to shed all over everything forever.

Neckline detail
I also really liked the neckline which is a sort of henley neck thing with two buttons (which are just BARELY visible in my photo).

I ramped the exposure all the way up to be visible on this shot, I don't actually glow
Size wise, I made a size L. I quite like the bust fit, but I wish I had made the jumper just a little bit longer, and the sleeves a little bit shorter (they grew more on blocking that I anticipated). Neither of these problems will prevent me from wearing the sweater, for sure. I did a horrible job blocking the sweater -- I realized too late I'd pinned it wrong, which is why the back looks like it drags to one side. It'll probably sort itself out when I wear it a bit more and it relaxes back into shape.

In conclusion: Yay! Finished sweater!

Next up on my needles: I already have another WIP which I cast on last year. It's a very simple scarf, but I decided to try out lace weight yarn so it's taking approximately forever to make any progress at all! Once that is done, I am not sure at all what I'll knit next. I'm pretty sure I'll be going through my Ravelry queue quite a lot over the next few weeks.

Tuesday, 17 May 2016

More polka dots (Ottobre 05-2008-02 buttoned denim skirt)

For various reasons I have some summer skirt shaped gaps in my wardrobe at present, so over the next few weeks I am going to make a few replacements.

Ottobre 05-2008-02 Buttoned denim skirt, image on the left from Ottobre
The first skirt I've made is a just-above-the knee, button-fronted a-line skirt. I saw this style a lot in shops over the autumn and winter, and it seems pretty popular this summer too. It's also a style that comes back into fashion pretty frequently, so when I dug through my pattern collection I found several possibilities. I settled eventually on Ottobre 05-2008-02. I knew from the modelled image that it was going to be too short for me as drafted and I therefore had to adjust 6 pattern pieces (centre and side front, centre and side back, and the front and back hem bands) in order to make it less knicker-revealing.
My polka dot version of Ottobre 05-2008-02 - front view
I ended up adding 10cm (4") to the length and since it's an A-line skirt, this also made the pattern pieces rather wider at the hem. In order to get the revised pattern out of my 1m piece of lightweight blue polka dot denim fabric I had to leave off one set of pockets (I chose to put the pair I could make on the front) and the weird self-belt thingy (which I actually never planned to cut out because: what, why?). I had only the tiniest pile of scraps left over when I was done and this came back to bite me later. I made the waistband facing from some blue elephant cotton lawn left over from making PJs last summer.

My polka dot version of Ottobre 05-2008-02 - back view
After what seemed like a lot of playing Tetris to get all the pattern pieces on the fabric, actual construction was mainly very easy. The most time-consuming thing was all the top-stitching, which, much like bias binding every seam, seems like a good idea before you start and after you finish, but not so much when you are swapping out needles and threads for the eight millionth time during construction. This was my first time top-stitching with actual Gutermann topstitch thread, and I wasn't wholly excited by the experience, I have to admit. It ravelled, it was hard to thread even with proper topstitch needles, and it broke on several occasions going over lumpy bits of seam. On the other hand, it does look much more striking than using regular thread. I used hammer-on jeans buttons for the front button band and these turned out to be quite easy to install once I broke out my big hammer rather than smacking at them feebly with my little craft hammer.

My polka dot version of Ottobre 05-2008-02 - internal view. My vertical seams are BARELY visible because I flat-felled them
Overall, I was really happy with the construction -- I didn't like the thread, but I do love the finished look of the top-stitching details, and a combination of following the Ottobre instructions and deciding to flat-fell the vertical seams and overlock the long curved hem band seams produced a nice clean finish both inside and out.

Close-up of buttons and top-stitching
 I would in fact say this was my best-finished garment of the year so far, if it weren't for the Big Horrible Flaw that I introduced into it, which caused a great deal of wailing and gnashing of teeth.

The place where I cut into it with my overlocker and had to patch :( :(
Ironically the other day I was reading a blog post on Mistakes Every Garment Sewer Will Make and thought to myself that despite many errors with my overlocker I hadn't actually cut into my fabric with it recently (#3 on the list) .... only to immediately do so on my next garment. It was a tiny hole but right in the middle of one of the largest pattern pieces, the rear hem band. I barely had enough scraps to test my buttonholes, let alone re-cut the hem band. I ended up patching it as best I could but if you know it's there, it's far from inconspicuous. That said, it's on the rear hem band where I'll never see it, and I feel that it passes the can-you-see-it-from-1m-away flaw test. I don't know, am I kidding myself and it's actually really awful? Should I have abandoned it the way the author of that blog post says she does? It's definitely not ideal but I feel like I can live with it.

I decided it wasn't noticeable unless you KNOW it's there.
I spent a lot of time while making this skirt nervous about fit because this is a new size for me. I've always historically found Ottobre to be pretty true to size based on their measurement table, and luckily this turned out to be the case again. I am pretty happy with how it fits overall. This is a size 40 straight off the pattern sheet with no adjustments except for length as described above. In a non-stretch woven I'll need to give myself some extra room at the waist compared to their draft, but in this stretch denim it's fine. My biggest concern now about this skirt is that with the length and the polka dots and the top-stitching, it's an order of magnitude more twee than the rest of my wardrobe. I mean, I think it's very cute, but I'm not 100% sure that "very cute" is wholly my thing, or really works on my 40 year old self. I'll guess I'll see how much I wear it!

As modelled by me. I will likely never again wear anything tucked in like this.
Next up: I am in the process of tracing out one of the more ridiculous patterns from the very latest Burda, 06-2016, which arrived on Saturday. I feel there is a lack of Giant Rectangles in my life, and only Burda can help me with that.  I am also tracing the pattern I have finally (FINALLY) settled on for my blue/green linen jacket. It's about 20 pieces though, so tracing alone may take some time!

Wednesday, 11 May 2016

Small things

Sometimes it's really satisfying to just whip up a pile of easy little things. In the last few days I've made:

1. PJ shorts (using larger scraps)

Ottobre 05-2011-02 'Sweet Dreams' PJ shorts made with remnants
These pyjama shorts are repeats of an easy-peasy pattern (Ottobre 05-2011-02 'Sweet Dreams') that I've now made 8 times including these versions. Rather boring, but necessary as I just got rid of a couple of pairs and I operate on a one-out-one-in rule with PJs. I'm always happy too to use up some of the bigger scraps lurking in my basket.

2. Simple woven slips

I made some half slips to go under skirts/dresses I have either already made or that I'm planning to make in the next few weeks. To make these I more or less followed Gertie's half-slip tutorial, without the lace or the bow. They're just single seam rectangles with a hem and a lingerie elastic waist -- dead simple stuff. I did add a side vent on the green one for extra movement ease. I didn't think of this in time to do so on the navy one, but it's short enough (due to fabric constraints) that my stride isn't restricted. This was also partly a scrap busting exercise as the navy viscose slip was made with the remnants of the (difficult to sew) fabric I used very recently to make a shirt.

I don't know why, but my camera REFUSED to take a decent photo of either of these, maybe in protest over how boring it was?
The green cotton one came out all right but the navy one is definitely not the prettiest or best made thing ever. My experience with the shifty, shreddy viscose was not particularly any easier this time around for all that I was just sewing it into a tube. On the plus side, that particular fabric is now all gone and I never have to sew with it again. I really don't care overly about the flaws given the function of a slip precludes it being seen by anyone but me!

3. Another Jasmin tee
Cozy Little World Jasmin tee in white
I could tell you a long boring version of why I needed to make a white t-shirt this week, but suffice to say: my decision to buy an inexpensive white tee in order to "free up time to sew more interesting things" turned out to be nothing like a good plan. Anyway, I've been wearing both of my two previous Jasmin tees in the recent spell of hot weather (!!) we've been having in England and I really love them. I didn't even hesitate to pull this pattern out again for another version this week. For a knit, this fabric is awfully prone to crease! You'd never know I pressed this specially to take the photo!

4. Wanderling progress

Another thing I've been doing is forcing myself to really just get on with finishing my Wanderling jumper. It's been lurking around in my knitting bag for months sans sleeves and I was almost entirely sans enthusiasm for finishing it. I'd pick it up every few weeks and knit a centimetre or two and then grind to a halt again. It wasn't that I don't like the jumper, I was just being bored/lazy/unmotivated/all of the above about it.

Wanderling jumper progress as of this morning (11th May): body and one sleeve done, just about 5cm into the second sleeve
Even though it's now totally unseasonal, I've decided this is going to be the month when I just hammer my way through the tedious stocking stitch that I have left to do and finish it already. I am thus happy to report that the Wanderling current status is: one sleeve done, second sleeve underway! I can't see any reason why I won't finish this month provided I keep plugging way.

Next up: I'm mired in pattern indecision on my summer outerwear project (a linen jacket). I keep thinking I've made a decision and then backtracking. In the meantime, I've got some other less paralyzing projects to start on, including a couple of summer skirts.

Thursday, 5 May 2016

Dotty (about this) top

Just in time for a mini heatwave to hit the UK (!!) my first piece of summer sewing, a new top, is done. (And I'm wearing it today and it is perfect for our suddenly-summer weather :D).

I've been wanting to try sewing with double gauze for a really long time, ever since I ran across Nani Iro double gauze prints back when I first started sewing and read about how amazing this fabric is to wear. I've still never bought any Nani Iro because my credit card screams and cringes away from me at the mere thought. However, back in February I ran across some (marginally) more affordable double gauze and splurged on it (and it WAS a splurge: £9/m and it's only 110cm wide! D:). The colourway I picked is a faded dark blue with white polka dots on one side and white with blue polka dots on the other.

The two sides of the fabric
When you read about sewing with double gauze, all the pattern advice seemed to be not to make anything that needed enormous precision as the fabric distorts easily when you sew. This was uppermost in my mind when I was looking for a pattern. My other criterion was that I wanted to make something that would take some advantage of the fabric having two usable sides, but I didn't particularly want to colour block.

I spotted this simple top in Burda 03-2016 right about the same time I bought the fabric, and the dipping rear hem seemed like a perfect use of a two sided fabric. All I had to do was wait a couple of months for my summer sewing season to roll around. You'll notice I declared it was summer sewing season on like, 1 May, and I finished this top on the 4th, so, you know, not that I was at all impatient to make it or anything! :D
Burda 03-2016-104: images from Burdastyle
The pattern itself, Burda 03-2016-104 (which has various variations -- #103-107 are all different top and dress options on the same theme) is really simple -- it's just a darted woven tee with a split at the neckline and three quarter sleeves, and a big inverted pleat in the back.

Burda 03-2016-104 in polka dot double gauze front view

I made a straight 44, as is my wont at the moment with Burda patterns, with my usual minor fit alterations (square shoulder adjustment, lowered the bust point) and a pretty substantial length alteration. I am not at all into crop tops as a look for me personally so I added 6cm to the length at the waistline. I also cut a 3cm hem allowance as instructed by Burda, but when it came to it I really loved the length before I finished the hem and didn't want to lose 3cm, plus turning up a 3cm hem on such a curvy hemline: ugh! I ended up just overlocking the edge and turned up the width of the overlocking, about 8mm. Overall, therefore, I added just over 8cm to the length.

Burda 03-2016-104 in polka dot double gauze  - side view -- you an actually see the hi-lo hem in this shot!
As far as construction goes, Burda rate this as a one and a half dot pattern for difficulty, and it is in fact exactly as straightforward to make as this suggests. My main difficulty was the bias binding/facing around the neckline. It took me a little while to visualize how the finished neckline was going to go together at all, though once I worked it out I couldn't understand why I'd been confused. I always find that if you can work out what it is Burda want you to do, the finish is usually lovely. It's just that it sometimes takes me longer than it should to figure it out in the first place!

Burda 03-2016-104 in polka dot double gauze -- rear view -- that inverted pleat is ENORMOUS
However, although in theory once I worked out what I was meant to do the neckline made perfect sense, in practice it was still a bit tricky. Although the double gauze fabric is very light it soon stacks up in bulk. In places, like the back neck, where I had layers of fabric for the inverted pleat, the amount of fabric to go under the neckline binding was quite substantial and took some effort to enclose neatly.

Burda 03-2016-104 in polka dot double gauze -- inside out view -- this is how the neckline looks internally when finished, which I think is really neat. Also I did ALL of the french seaming including the armholes for a change.
For my own construction choices, I basically French seamed the crap out of this shirt. I do tend to French seam or flat fell almost all my woven tops at this point, especially when the fabric is shreddy (this double gauze shed threads like mad) but I've not done too many proper French seams on armholes. In fact, I think I've only done it once before -- normally even if I flat fell/French seam everywhere else I just overlock the armhole. This is because when I first started making woven tops about 18 months ago, I had such problems setting in sleeves that I always dreaded that part of construction. There was no way I was going to seam them twice! More recently though I've had such a run of good experiences setting sleeves in that I have more or less lost my fear of it altogether. I decided this time to have another stab at French seaming the armhole on this top... and it came out perfectly! I'll probably do it more often now.

As modelled by me. Sorry if I look a bit crumpled, by the time I took these I'd already gone out to do my grocery shopping and come back again. It is a LITTLE wide at the neck, as you can see from the fact that the straps of my white tank top beneath just show.
The big question is, did the double gauze live up to my expectations? Overall, yes! It's lovely to sew once you get used to the way it's both bulkier and more fragile than regular cotton lawn or poplin, and I love the way it feels to wear. One thing I am a bit surprised by is how much body the fabric has -- I sort of thought it might be a bit drapier because the fabric is so soft, but it stands away from your body more like the way a crisper fabric might. I definitely agree with the advice I read about avoiding construction that requires tremendous precision. The fabric isn't shifty like last week's navy viscose -- in fact it was lovely to cut out -- but if you're off the straight grain at all it stretches like c-r-a-z-y. The bias binding for the neckline was probably the stretchiest bias binding I've ever made. For me personally, at my level of sewing expertise (lol, 'expertise'), I'd hate to try to sew e.g. shirt pocket corners or something where I would want perfect angles because I think it would get very ugly, very fast.

In conclusion: I'm basically in love with this top and the fabric. I had been planning to buy some white linen for another top to sew later this summer, but I've managed to squeeze another 2m piece of double gauze in plain white out of my budget instead, so look out for that some time in the next few weeks. :D

Up next: I have a whole slew of little easy things up next in my queue -- all of them are not-very-interesting-but-wholly-necessary summer wardrobe needs and I want to just plough through them so that I have everything on hand.